One of the critical points to be made about the international monitor dispute is being overlooked. No one would suggest that the mission of the monitors would be to prevent violence by force of arms. Rather, it is widely assumed that they would monitor the respective elective efforts of Israel and the Palestinians to observe a cease-fire.

So Arafat's constant clamor for the monitors should give the lie to his claim that he can't now control the terrorists. If he can't do it now, how can he be so sure that he will be able to do so later?

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Of course, some would argue that he is banking ? with good reason ? on the monitors to operate with a pro-Palestinian bias. But while that may be what he has in mind, it doesn't answer the logical question as to why anyone should believe that he can't stop the violence now.

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